— by Tyler G.
Tis the season to be jolly. The time of year when we shower everyone we know, from friends to our mom to our little sibling back home (if you have one) with gifts from the heart. Absolute dorks should be no exception to this. Even if they're anime lover trash like myself and, since you're reading this, someone in your life.
So let's give you some great gift ideas for any anime fans you know. Heck, maybe even yourself for all I know- I'm not a mind reader (or a cop).
Weebs In Toyland
Realistically speaking, they probably have something like a subscription to anime streaming services like HiDive or Crunchyroll anyway, and this time of year is pretty dead for the anime convention scene too- so we're by and large going to be featuring physical anime merchandise of some sort. And to be blunt?
One of the big go-to's as far as gifts for anime fans go is getting them some figurines. One of the largest sources of revenue for anime and manga as an industry has long been toy and collectible sales- and that's still true today.
Like to be completely honest with you, I have an entire closet worth of Gundam models waiting to be built. And I don't think I'm alone in this- a lot of people into anime will have some kind of bugaboo like that.
Isn't That A Bit Infantile?
Only if you're boring. Chances are, someone you know into anime likely has some kind of plastic nicknack lying about- be it on their work desk, or shelf, or if they're really ride or die, and I mean avid, anime fans, some kind of small macabre shrine devoted to their Japanimation god.
You probably aren't buying for someone that deep in though.
Okay, So What Do I Get Them?
Well, if they are deep enough to have a shrine, you should probably just give them money or some extra special, fancy candles for said shrine, which is presumably to Sailor Moon or Naruto or something. Possibly call a priest too actually, there might be a Faustian pact going on.
Again, I'm not really a mind reader here.
So I need you to think hard on this one, honestly. There is, unfortunately, no such thing as a blanket, singular perfect gift for anime fans, much like there isn't a perfect gift for any group of people.
Anime fandom in particular is such a fractured, multiple-levels for multiple-groups sort of thing anyway, perhaps rivaled by nothing short of the equally volatile fandom for superhero comic books.
...Which also have plenty of anime-esc merch but Fair Game doesn't sell that stuff often, so I'm going to gloss over those mostly (see also: why I'm not telling you "buy so much manga. enough to blot out the sun. buy them the Thunderbolt Fantasy manga, I want there to be English blu-rays of my puppet kung fu show and I am using you to do it"- we don't have that!), but it's worth considering if you're hitting up multiple stores and have a big pocket for that Whatever-Man in your life.
But think hard: What's their favorite anime? What's their favorite shows? Or failing that, at least what's their favorite character? If you can't find a reason to ask directly, just see what shows they watch on Crunchyroll or Netflix. By doing that, you'll have a small little idea for a fun gift for an anime fan.
Since I'm not a mind reader (or cop), I'll try to give a few examples of fairly popular choices for this question.
Make a Contract This Holiday Season ／人◕ ‿‿ ◕人＼
Hey, speaking of Faustian pacts with terrifying anime godlike beings- we've got a figure of Puella Magi Madoka Magica's Kyuubey! Right in time for the new movie coming out next year, no less.
Don't let cute looks deceive you: Kyubey is terrifying and, much like Madoka itself, shouldn't be shown to kids.
This horrible little weasel of a magical girl mascot is probably one of my favorite characters to come out of an anime from the last decade. While he might try and harvest your soul to stave off the entropic decay of the universe, he's also very cute and fluffy (and presumably? Delicious). So who is to say if he's truly wrong? Not his fault if you didn't ask for the terms of that contract.
This figurine was made for the 10th anniversary of the TV series, which is definitely not making me feel old for watching fansubs nearly weekly on my PSP while it was airing, even has the velvety texture the characters mention his fur having when they pet him.
You could almost forgive him for all the terrifying Lovecraftian actions he takes. Make a contract with him and add him to your anime lovers' collection today.
Just ask about
The Moonlight Legend's Revenge
Rolling from one magical girl anime to another, I've got to mention Sailor Moon. After all, that's up there with Dragon Ball Z as one of the anime series effectively responsible for creating the modern anime fandom from its airing on Toonami in the late 90s.
You have a few choices here- but the main two I'm gonna suggest are a plush and a figure. The first one is adorable, being a plush version of the Transformation Brooch that comes with a smaller plush of Luna. At its size, it could make a pretty comfy throw pillow too- letting you add a little anime flair to your home décor by placing it on the couch or even on a bed.
The other selection I'm suggesting trying to get your anime lover their favorite Sailor Senshi as a figure- Fair Games gets a set of fairly affordable figurines of the core Senshi in semi-often. For instance, we have one for Sailor Mars right now.
Why specifically did I choose Sailor Mars specifically to show? Well, I did advise you to buy their favorite, didn't I? So if you're somehow reading this for present ideas for me specifically, that's one.
Set Sail For One Piece of Booty for Anime Lovers
The only one of the "Big Three" series featured prominently in Shonen Jump during the early to mid 2000s- Naruto, Bleach, and One Piece- only one still stands. Fittingly, it's One Piece. Fair Game has a decent selection of booty on hand.
You want to give them something with Luffy, that rubber boy who took a bite of Gum Gum? Yohoho.
If they're not shy about anime lady figures, there's a pretty nice Nami figure we've got that's also pretty affordable.
While there isn't a Sanji to be cooking, and no Chopper to be doctoring any booboos made, at least Zoro's still here, still like a samurai.
Get That Dragon Ball- Gotta Have 'Em All
Wise guys- they don't know it all, but they definitely know about Dragon Ball. It's hard to be alive and not at least have heard the words Dragon Ball Z at least a few times in your life- it's more or less the most famous anime of all time. When you think anime, you probably think of Dragon Ball Z. This series not only has a legacy that leads directly to stuff like My Hero Academia, but is still a thriving beast in its own right.
Goku is in the Thanksgiving Day Parade for god's sake.
So chances are, you know somebody who is a big fan of Dragon Ball Z- even if they're not into anime as a whole. And you'll need to give gifts after all.
So Fair Games has a fair selection of potential Dragon Ball Z gifts- enough to cover your bases.
They like Legos? Well, get them some Nanoblock kits- which are like super tiny, itty bitty legos. Give them the Roshi one for example.
If they want something cute and fluffy to snuggle? We've got an adorable Puar plush to hug and cherish and not forget about like the show did after the original Dragonball.
Could also get them this sick looking Shenron figure too, as part of their display. Look at
It's Always Time to Duel With This Yu Gi Oh Plush
One of the other nostalgic points for a lot of people now is Yu Gi Oh. It's really hard to imagine now, but there was a time when the seemingly goofy card game peddling anime about a spiky-haired teenager possessed by the spirit of an ancient pharaoh was taking over the world.
I have vivid memories of being a kid, carrying a deck everywhere I could (after all, you never knew when it was time to throw down), and buying all three of the special edition TV Guide issue with the holographic covers twenty years ago.
I didn't even have a use for TV Guide, I barely watched TV even back then, I just thought the covers were cool. And now TV Guide doesn't even exist anymore...
That sound you just heard was me screaming about my youth flying away. Also? Squeaking joints and back popping the wrong way. And chances are, at least one other person is feeling this way- so let them soothe the pain of this anime loving friend (or maybe you yourself), please: get them this plush Yugi Motou to sob their lost youth into.
Rapid Fire Bonus Round: Stocking Stuffers!
Some particularly fun gifts for that anime fan in your life could be the simplest. Adorable accessories to stuff in their stockings! Do they like My Hero Academia? One of these three blind boxes- one here, another here, and a last one here- and they might be lucky enough to pull their favorite character.
If they like Spy x Family? Anya noodle topper works as a great gift you can stash in a stocking and have on as a desk piece.
Heck, if you're lucky, Chopper might be around doctoring after all- but now in
pog small plush form.
Give The World of Games Some Love Too
Of course, Fair Game is a video game store and you know what else has a bunch of anime things in 'em?
Video games. They don't even have to explicitly be a tie in to an anime- sometimes they just have the vibes of an anime.
Are they a big fan of school-set fantasy anime? Fire Emblem Three Houses is set.
You know that anime fan in your life is a big fan of the seminal Neon Genesis Evangelion but they don't speak Japanese and can't play the actual EVA games? Well, if you've got a big pocket, you can give them the beloved cult JRPG Xenogears (and maybe a book on Gnosticism for Dummies to help).
They like robot anime a lot and dig a tactical RPG? Then they're my kind of people, but also will adore the massive crossovers seen in Super Robot Wars X.
If they're a fan of fantasy anime and tabletop fantasy like Dungeons and Dragons, they'll probably adore Record of Lodoss War- and both the Diablo-inspired Dreamcast game and the more recent Metroidvania, Deedlit in Wonder Labyrinth.
Heck, if you just know they like anime in general, and are waxing poetic about the days of the Playstation One being top dog- well, it can't hurt to get the incredibly 90s anime feeling title Legend of Dragoon and watch them either unlock a forgotten memory of it, or otherwise be psyched about finding a fairly competent PSX cult classic.
This is all to say that while there are no uniformly "best gifts for anime lovers", no easy win like that, chances are someone you know- a friend, a sibling, a parent, or a lover- will probably like a gift.
And while I can't wave a magic wand and give you the perfect gift for them, I do hope this list's helped find a great gift for the one you're buying for- and heck, even if not, given you a nice laugh or better yet, a reason to visit the shop anyway.
Happy Holidays, from Fair Game. Take care of yourselves out there.